Advocating for family medicine
At last year’s National Family Practitioners Conference one of the workshops looked at future scenarios for family medicine in South Africa (http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/20786190.2016.1272231). The workshop concluded that the Academy should “take a more active role in advocating and communicating for the discipline in South Africa”.
In February the national council met to develop such an advocacy plan. The council identified a number of key stakeholders such as family physicians and other generalists, department of health, private sector medical aids and funders, professional and regulatory bodies, family physicians and universities. For each of these stakeholders we considered the purpose of engagement, the key messages, best medium and messenger, timing and resources required.
Over the next few months you should see some of the activity that was planned at this workshop.
From left to right: Andrew Ross, Biano Hobson, Frederick Mayanja, Sam Agbo, Bob Mash, Sruthi Mohan, Jenny Nash, Wim Beukes, Andre Marais and Lushiku Nkombua.
On May 19th we celebrated World Family Doctor Day and published an opinion editorial in The Conversation to explain how family physicians are improving health care in South Africa’s communities (https://theconversation.com/family-physicians-are-improving-health-care-in-south-africas-rural-communities-94768)
In the next South African Family Practice Journal you should find an editorial from Prof Bob Mash on family medicine and advertising for the national conference and membership.
Click HERE for a very brief survey asking you for feedback on what the Academy is doing and how we can serve our membership even better. Please take two minutes to complete this.
We also plan a policy brief for the department of health and a briefing document for the Health Professions Council on accreditation of postgraduate family medicine training.